“So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known. What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops. Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all counted. So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows. “Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven; but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
I once knew a woman whose constant refrain was “Who cares what other people think?” The answer to that question was her! She cared. A lot. And she put a lot of energy into keeping up appearances.
So many of us as adults fear that we’ll be “found out” to be the frauds we are, that others will discover that we don’t have our acts together. But Jesus makes clear that he’s onto us. He knows, and he loves us.
In Baz Luhrmann’s movie Strictly Ballroom, the characters discover the perennial truth that “a life lived in fear is a life half lived.” Jesus loves us, and his great desire for us is a life fully lived, confident in his love.
—Fr. Martin Connell, SJ is Professor of Education at John Carroll University and Rector of the John Carroll University Jesuit community.
“Love ought to manifest itself in deeds rather than in words. Love consists in a mutual sharing of goods, for example, the lover gives and shares with the beloved what he possesses, or something of that which he has or is able to give; and vice versa, the beloved shares with the lover.”
—St. Ignatius Loyola, The Spiritual Exercises